Economic Growth & Cultural Vitality: City celebrates Arts Month

March 29, 2024 3:42 PM

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Mar. 29, 2024) — April is Arts Month in Santa Monica, and the city is highlighting the vibrancy of arts and culture with events and activations, all kicking off with an opening reception March 30. 

The month-long celebration showcases the city’s key strategic priority of Economic Growth & Cultural Vitality.   

Santa Monica has celebrated Arts Month since 2019, when Senator Ben Allen, with support from Californians for the Arts, was instrumental to having the state officially recognize and celebrate the arts by declaring April as Arts, Culture & Creativity Month. This initiative aims to raise visibility and awareness about the value of the arts within communities, empower arts advocates and encourage greater investments in the arts industry and workforce.  

A free community reception is set for Saturday, March 30, from 2-4 p.m. kicking off Arts Month at the Annenberg Community Beach House. Photographer Sam Comen will speak about his “Our Pico” portrait collection, now on view in the Beach House Gallery.  

“Our Pico,” which the city recently acquired into its municipal Art Bank collection, celebrates the workers who contribute to Pico Boulevard’s economy. The exhibition was created in partnership with the Pico Improvement Organization with the support of the city’s Art of Recovery program.  

Inspired by the Works Progress Administration-era’s Federal Art Project, the city’s Art of Recovery program has funded 105 arts grants to community artists and organizations totaling nearly $1 million.  

Other Arts Month initiatives include a partnership with Santa Monica Travel & Tourism to promote local events and arts happenings throughout April, including concerts, exhibits, film screenings, comedy performances, and business specials. More information is available at

“I’m thrilled to celebrate Arts Month on the heels of a wildly successful Frieze Los Angeles earlier this year at the Santa Monica Airport,” said Recreation and Arts Director Jenny Rogers. “Through our continued partnerships and support provided through the Art of Recovery program, we will continue to uplift Santa Monica’s creative economy and celebrate its cultural vitality.”  

In addition to various Arts Month events and in celebration of National Poetry Month, the city will announce its first poet laureate and host a meet-and-greet workshop and reception on April 20. More details on this event will be provided soon. 

A community favorite, the free annual Arts & Literacy Festival, is set for April 27 at Virginia Avenue Park. Families are invited to a fun-filled day of activities centered around reading and the arts for early learners. 

The creative sector is a key contributor to Santa Monica’s local economy, with 35 percent of the city’s total employment in the creative industries and technology sector. Santa Monica is a hub for major companies, including Hulu, Lionsgate Entertainment, Oracle, and Snap Inc. + Universal Music Group. To read more, visit

And Arts Month is a perfect time to explore the city’s robust public art program in Santa Monica’s public spaces. Public art locations, artworks and details along with rotating Art Bank collections can be viewed at

For more information about the arts in Santa Monica, visit

Media Contact

Tati Simonian
Public Information Officer


Arts, Culture & Fun, Strategic Priorities, The Arts


Recreation and Arts